In fact, by the time I was diagnosed, I recoiled even when a man flirtatiously touched my arm or complimented me in a suggestive way.Over the years, people have been quick to write off my vaginal pain conditions as me being a tease or as anxiety stemming from past sexual trauma.
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“I’m just not someone who is supposed to be loved,” I told her.
She reminded me my Vagina Problems were not the end of the world and there were ways around them: oral, toys. But as I sat at the café table with my tea growing cold in front of me, I began to lose faith.
It was a Saturday night, and I had somehow convinced myself to go on another date.
My eyelashes were still damp from the tears I shed while talking on the phone with my best friend.
In the past two years – in the hopes of alleviating my pain – I have been to physical therapy, psychological therapy, and started support groups.
I have slept with ice on my vagina, tried electric shock therapy and acupuncture, brought my heating pad with me everywhere I go, and used a dilator every morning before work.
But who wouldn’t be anxious about having sex when it had been so traumatic every single time I tried?
It doesn’t help that, since I last had a boyfriend, the line between dating and dating app-enabled casual sex has become very thin.
I imagined what it would be like to tell this cute, blue-eyed stranger that no matter how loud he made me laugh or how attentively he listened to my childhood stories, I may never be able to have sex with him. I pushed the thought out of my head, erased the text, grabbed my keys, and walked out the door. As I parked my car, I could feel beads of sweat dotting the back of my neck.